mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
I follow an excellent curated list of reporters. Thrown in as the token conservative is Salena Zito. Zito's claim to fame is that she called Pennsylvania and thus the nation as going for Trump early, and she was right. She has positioned herself as the voice of Forgotten Non-Urban America. (This reached hilarious levels when she toured "non-urban America" and counted in, not only a commuter suburb of Gary, Indiana, but people who actually commuted to Gary.)

Today, Salena retweets a 1994 post in which she explained it all to us, race edition. (Save for nausea before clicking.)

Briefly, the essay says that a black family moved into her white neighborhood in 1969. I'll let her explain it.

Race in Pittsburgh, as in many industrial cities, was volatile in 1969. Society was changing rapidly for whites and blacks and, as with most change, some people reacted with fear, others with anger, and many with no brains at all.

In typically horrible timing, government-enforced integration coincided with Lyndon Johnson's “Great Society,” which bulldozed iconic ethnic neighborhoods — tearing apart lifelong experiences, communities and ways of life — in favor of public housing.

It was supposed to compensate for past injustices but it merely punished one community to make amends to another.

No mention that the "iconic ethnic neighborhoods" included black neighborhoods, of course, or the neighborhoods -- almost certainly including Zito's -- whose sale contracts forbade the owner to sell to a black person.  No, that neighborhood just mysteriously grew up all-white.

Thanks to my parents, the Chatmans weren't considered “black people.” They were just new neighbors, and we did what we always did when someone new moved onto the block — baked chocolate-chip cookies and delivered those to their home.
Three months later — after spending our days jumping rope, playing tag and all of the other things that 9-year-old girls do — a brick shattered the Chatmans' front window; another smashed their car's windshield, and the perpetrators, a couple of teenage boys, tried to burn a cross on the lawn.

“Your dad chased those young teens ... he caught all of them, single-handedly, and held them for the police,” Carnisa recalled. “I remember him telling them how ashamed he was of them.”

And everything was okay then! And Carnisa, her black friend,  repaid her by saving her from a black riot in high school! And therefore:

So the solution to our nation's racial discourse should be handled by us individually, one person at a time — and not by exploiting bad deeds done by both sides that only further the hatred.

Note that it never occurs to Zito that Carnisa had to go to school with the brothers and sisters and friends of those boys who burned a cross.  Or that there were other people who put their resentment of "tearing apart lifelong experiences" into words and action.  No.  Zito made friends with Carnisa and they're still close friends and that's what everybody should do!  And nobody (among Zito's friends) considered the Chatmans black, so that made everything better!

You won't read an essay that better encapsulates the belief that individual virtue is better than collective action.   With a triple scoop of  white privilege.

e:  Chaser.  Mother Jones finally does what nobody else is doing and interviews rural black voters.

Turner’s mom, who cleans houses in town for a living, went to work a couple of days after [the election], and her employer, an older white woman, brought up the results of the recent election. The two had talked politics before—Turner’s mom is a Democrat, and her employer is a Republican. “Well, you might as well come and live with me now,” the employer said. “You gonna be mine eventually."

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 I was playing the admirable game "West of Loathing" when I had to solve a number puzzle where I had to add up pressing buttons with different values (411,295,161) to reach a specified total of 3200.  I button mashed, then said, to hell with this, this is a linear programming equation, plugged it into Wolfram Alpha, and solved for x,y,z.

God bless technology.

P.S.  If you enjoy puzzle games, silly humor, and combat that can be dialed back so that even the slowest-trigger-fingered in the West -- that would be me -- can play it, try West of Loathing.  I find it engaging, focusing,  and soothing, in times that need some soothing.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 Found in junk drawer while searching for Ex-Acto knife:  one pair of rounded-tip plastic Safe-T-Cut child's scissors.

My offspring are 26 and 23.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 8AM. Phone rings.  Phone rings a second time, which means it's less likely to be spam.
Me: sits bolt upright in bed and picks up phone.
Dad: Your mother is in the hospital with heart fibrillation.  She should be home tomorrow or the next day.
Me: I assume I shouldn't fly out.
Dad: Oh, no, no, she needs to rest and relax.
Me: When did this happen?
Dad: A day ... no, day before yesterday.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
because he didn't understand why there were tears rolling down.

Bad manners

Jul. 5th, 2017 07:35 pm
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
You, as a manager, ask a transwoman on your team to review a draft survey, which asks respondents "What is your gender?", with the options being Male, Female, or Transgender. She replies to the survey:

'Transgender' is not a gender. Transgender people may be male, female, gender queer, non-binary... If you want to know if a survey respondent is transgender, you need to explicitly ask that question."

How do you respond?
Read more... )

Read Coraline Ada Ehmke's whole essay about being a woman at Github. My strong suspicion is that a fact-based response like the above would have passed unnoticed from a man, but was considered too aggressive for a woman. There should have been softening language, like "I'm afraid that" and "I know you're working from the best intentions" and "Please don't mind me mentioning one issue".

I've sent a lot of emails like the one above. Good thing I wasn't working for Github at the time.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
Three different preventative drugs for migraine are in late-stage trials and doing well. This is a big damn deal. There are drugs that are abortives -- once you start feeling migraine symptoms, you take them to drastically reduce those symptoms -- but all the preventatives are off-label for something else.

To give you some idea, the preventatives I take are:
  • Lyrica (Federally approved for seizures, neuropathic pain, and fibromyalgia)
  • Botox (Federally approved for torticollis, lots of other clenched-muscle conditions, and various kinds of cosmetic uses)
In the past I have tried beta and calcium-channel blockers (high blood pressure), multiple anti-epileptics, and IIRC one antihistamine that had to be special-ordered from Canada.

The migraine-specific triptan drugs, when they were introduced, were a revolution: instead of blunting the pain you were short-circuiting the migraine cycle.   I have hopes that one of these three drugs will be a similar game-changer for prevention.  Fingers crossed.

In the meantime, I'm overdue for a Botox treatment; will schedule tomorrow.



mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
Donald Trump's Fourth of July post is a video of a mostly -- I'll be honest, I quit thirty seconds in, and at that point it was entirely -- white choir and band performing an anthem to Trump's campaign slogan.

This isn't an uptime "We like Ike" ditty, it's an incantation.

https://twitter.com/realDonaldTrump/status/882186896285282304

So. We are living in a fascist state, we know where they're going, and I don't know how to stop them. Here's a better-written anthem as a chaser.

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
Women Entrepeneurs Speak Out on Sexual Harassment

Wendy Dent, 43, whose company Cinemmerse makes an app for smart watches, said she was sent increasingly flirtatious messages by a start-up adviser, Marc Canter, as she was trying to start her company in 2014. Mr. Canter, who had founded a software company in the 1980s that became known as Macromedia, initially agreed to help her find a co-founder. But over time, his messages became sexual in nature.

In one message, reviewed by The Times, he wrote that she was a “sorceress casting a spell.” In another, he commented on how she looked in a blue dress and added, “Know what I’m thinking? Why am I sending you this — in private?”

Mr. Canter, in an interview, said that Ms. Dent “came on strong to me, asking for help” and that she had used her sexuality publicly. He said he disliked her ideas so he behaved the way he did to make her go away.

As is now usual in harassment cases, once women are bold enough -- at considerable risk -- to name names and circumstances, more witnesses show up to say "Oh, me too."
At least five women have said "Yeah, I had the same problem with Dave McClure", and other have spoken up about Marc Canter.

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
The National Cathedral is debating what to do about windows celebrating Robert E. Lee and Stonewall Jackson that were donated by the Daughters of the Confederacy in 1953.

Here are two of the Jackson windows.

stonewall jackson depicted as saint

That is, without a doubt, the iconography of sainthood. Jackson is being welcomed into Heaven with the words "So he passed over and all the trumpets sounded for him", which is from Pilgrim's Progress.

Stonewall Jackson was a 'kind' slaveowner (yes, sneer quotes) who sold his slaves after the beginning of the civil war because "the excitement of the times proved so demoralizing to them". (A grandson of one of his slaves erected a memorial window to him. People are complicated.) He fought in defense of slavery.

He was not a fucking saint. The Daughters of the Confederacy donated windows depicting him as such. (The National Cathedral removed the Confederate Battle flag from these windows and from the Robert E. Lee windows, which have the same issues, last year.) A cathedral window should not be glorifying him.

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
... but sent to it, this biting and incisive letter from its copy editors.

After we were compared to dogs urinating on fire hydrants when we edited stories, in an internal report that called for the elimination of "low-value editing" and made it all but clear which stages of editing this referred to — so much so that it became a running joke among the copy desks for months ("How's the low-value editing going in your section today?") — along with the report's implication that copy editing was merely finding "easily identifiable errors, such as spelling and grammar mistakes";
 
After some of us were recruited for "editing tests" to streamline the process, or, as it turned out, figure out how to make our own jobs obsolete;


After we were told that to remain employed, we would have to apply for new "strong editor" positions meant to be a hybrid of the two types of editors at The Times, backfielders and copy editors, and realized only copy editors had to be reevaluated categorically;

 

After we were told that this "restructuring" would also reduce our numbers by more than half;

After completing a first round of interviews, some held by interviewers who clearly had not even read our résumés and cover letters, and competing against the very colleagues we are leaning on in these times;


Read the whole damn thing.

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
A good WWI poem, to take the last out of your mouth.

 When you see millions of the mouthless dead
Across your dreams in pale battalions go,
Say not soft things as other men have said,
That you'll remember. For you need not so.
Give them not praise. For, deaf, how should they know
It is not curses heaped on each gashed head?
Nor tears. Their blind eyes see not your tears flow.
Nor honour. It is easy to be dead.
Say only this, “They are dead.” Then add thereto,
“Yet many a better one has died before.”
Then, scanning all the o'ercrowded mass, should you
Perceive one face that you loved heretofore,
It is a spook. None wears the face you knew.
Great death has made all his for evermore.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
I was looking for the text of a song I sang (as part of a chorus) in college; it was a setting of Sara Teasdale's "Pierrot stands in a garden".  I fell over a 19-teens anthology that is entirely poems about Pierrot.    I remember reading Murder Must Advertise and having no idea at all who Pierrot, Pierrette, and Columbine were.   Why did the Commedia dell'arte characters make so little of a lasting mark in American culture?  (Or, can it be, in my head?)

edit: I have just run into the section of WW1 poems about Pierrot.  Bizarre.

PIERROT AT WAR
A Year ago in Carnival
We danced till break of day;
A year ago in Carnival
The boulevards were gay;
And roses shook the whispering air,
Like a great sibilant soft fanfare.
 
In Carnival, in Carnival,
A Prince of Magic comes,
To the sound of fifes, and the sound of horns,
And the sound of little drums.

A year ago in Carnival,
The lamps along the quays
Lay softer on the misty night
Than stars in leafy trees,
And down the ribboned sparkling street
Pierrot ran on twinkling feet.
 
Ah year! — There is no Carnival:
The north burns dusky red,
And on the white of Pierrot's brow
Is a long scar instead;
While ever the muttering runs
From the bleeding lips of the guns.
 
This year, this year at Carnival 
A Prince of Magic comes, 
With blood-red crest against the sky 
And a snarl of angry drums. 
 
Maxwell Struthers Hurt

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
I'm reading about the Summerland fire disaster (a resort on the Isle of Man burned down, killing 50) and I got to the list of special baths offered.

At street level, there was the remedial entrance for persons using the aerotone, sauna, steam, hot, cold plunge, slipper, Vichy douche, massage, Russian vapour and Turkish baths. Some facilities on this level, such as an aerotone bath, did not appear in the original plans and were added during construction because they had proved to be profitable additions to swimming baths in mainland Britain.

Aerotone baths (do watch the video!) were a sort of early Jacuzzi with bubbles and a cold rinse at the end.  As far as I can tell, a slipper bath is a plain ol' bathtub with one sloped side for reclining.   A Vichy douche was, at Vichy, a four-hand massage under a hot shower of Vichy water.  At Summerland, it was presumably just a massage under a hot shower, which still sounds swell to me.  I do not know the difference between a sauna, a Russian vapour bath, and a Turkish bath. 

mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
From Woman's World, August, 1936 p. 24, but this time not nasty. 


To begin at the beginning, here are two quick sandwich breads -Chocolate Bread which you will find perfectly grand for cream cheese or marmalade sandwiches, and Date-Nut-Orange Bread.

Chocolate Bread
3 cups sifted cake flour
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 3/4 teaspoons salt
1 egg
1/4 cup melted butter or shortening
1 1/4 cups milk
2 squares (ounces) unsweetened chocolate, melted

Sift together flour, baking powder and salt. Add sugar and when thoroughly blended moisten with the beaten egg. shortening and milk,. adding these gradually and mixing well. Finally add the chocolate and when well blended turn into a greased loaf-pan and bake in a moderate oven-350 degrees F.--about one and a quarter hours.

Date-Nut-Orange Bread

2 cups white flour
1 teaspoon soda [baking soda, I assume, not washing]
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups graham flour
3/4 cup sugar
2/3 cup chopped nut-meats
2/3 cup pitted dates, cut small
Grated rind 1 orange
2 cups sour milk
1/2 cup molasses

Sift together the white hour. soda, salt and baking powder. Add the graham flour, sugar, nut-meats,
dates and orange rind and moisten with the blended sour milk and molasses. Turn into one large well greased bread pan and bake in a moderate oven-350 degrees F.-about one and a quarter hours.

...
Another variety of the rolled sandwich is the one where buttered fresh bread is rolled around a spray of watercress. a short stalk of celery (plain or stuffed) or a tip of cooked asparagus, any of these being first dipped into French dressing for greater flavor.
[I've seen recipes where the asparagus was dipped in hollandaise. Mm.]

...
Afternoon Tea Sandwiches

Cucumber: White bread with filling of finely minced well drained cucumber seasoned with onion juice, lemon juice and minced parsley.

Rolled Mint: Cream butter for sandwiches then work into it very finely minced mint-1 teaspoon to 2/3 cup butter.

Peach Cream: Spread white, graham or whole wheat bread first with softened butter then with cream cheese., next with peach (or apricot) marmalade. Nuts if you like but they are good enough without. Serve either as open or closed sandwiches.

Tropical: Use white bread, spread with creamed butter then with currant jelly into which shredded coconut, plain or toasted, has been beaten with a fork. Top with thinly sliced bananas sprinkled with lemon juice. Serve either open or closed.

Date Nut: Thin slices of pound cake or sponge cake with filling of chopped dates and nuts (in equal proportions) moistened with orange juice.

Campfire Sandwiches

Split, toast and butter round sandwich rolls. Fill with piping hot slices of sautéed canned corned beef hash, top with a little prepared horseradish, mustard or mustard pickle. Serve dill pickles on the side.

Roquefort-Ham for the Slag Party*

Combine finely minced ham with one-fourth its bulk each of mashed roquefort cheese and chopped sweet pickles. Moisten with French dressing or mayonnaise. Use buttered whole wheat or rye bread or pumpernickel, topping the filling, if desired, with thinly sliced, well chilled, seasoned fresh tomatoes.

Century Club

Use three slices buttered toast for each sandwich. Arrange on the first, lettuce, crisp bacon and sliced tomato moistened with French dressing or mayonnaise. Cover with second slice of toast, placing on this lettuce, cold tongue and minced mustard pickle. Top with remaining toast slice, cut through to form two triangles and garnish with pickle fans.

* okay, it's really Stag Party, but I prefer the OCR version. 
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 From Woman's World, June, 1934, p. 13.
Magic Mayonnaise
1/4 cup vinegar
1/4 cup oil
2/3 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
Few grains cayenne

Place ingredients in a pint jar in order given. Fasten top of jar tightly and shake vigorously for one or two minutes. If a heavier consistency is desired place jar in refrigerator to chill before using.

There is worse to come.
Mineral Oil Dressing

2 egg yolks
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 1/4 cups mineral oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon pepper or paprika

Beat egg yolks until thick gradually adding lemon juice, then blend in oil carefully -- as dressing thickens, oil may be added more quickly. Season and chill before using.

This dressing is particularly desirable for laxative diets, also for reducing diets as the mineral oil has no nutritional value.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
 From  Woman's World, August, 1937.

4 tablespoons butter
1 tablespoon flour
1 cup milk
2 eggs
2 tablespoons glycerine
1 teaspoon salt
Dash of cayenne
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon dry mustard 
1/2 cup vinegar.

Combine butter and flour in double boiler, add milk gradually and cook, stirring constantly, as for white sauce.  Beat egg yolks and glycerine slightly, then add remaining ingredients, stir into first mixture, and continue cooking until thick and smooth.   Remove from fire and pour slowly over stiffly beaten egg whites, beating while pouring.  When cold cover and keep in refrigerator.

This is for making a mixed vegetable salad, or for "moistening" chopped raw vegetables for use as a sandwich spread.  It probably wasn't as dreadful as I think it sounds, but, Lord, it doesn't sound good.

e:  Five or six pages later:  "Surprise the family with delicious Grape-Nuts mousse".  I'll say.  It's an Italian meringue with cream, grape nuts, and vanilla beaten in, then frozen.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
A couple of months ago I built two Ikea bookshelves to put behind my husband's and my comfy chairs, so that we could get temporary control over the stacks of books on the floor.  After putting the shelves together, I didn't have the energy to clear a space to move them into.  They've stood just behind the chairs at the kitchen table for those two months.

Today we bravely moved one of the bookshelves into place, which required .... coping with the stacks of books on the floor.  Which stacks included magazines (do I want that copy of Threads?  Should I save it out of the recycling in case another GBACG member wants it?  ARGH DECISIONS) and random things that had gotten trapped amongst the stacks.  (Hey, THAT's what happened to that backup phone power cell.)

I am physically shaking.  But one bag of garbage and a respectable chunk of recycling are going OUT of the house, one bookshelf is in place and has shelves up so that I can put things away, and I can get to the kitchen table without eeling around a bookshelf.

I'm still shaking, though.

e: I installed Onepass before all this started and began the agonizing task of moving all my passwords from Chrome to 1pass, upping their security along the way.  I was a proper good geek and rolled physical dice to generate a passphrase from www.diceware.com.   Along the way, I changed my uncrackable but completely unrememberable Google password to a passphrase.  So that was another thing.
mme_hardy: White rose (Default)
The (sadly) typical historical food blog runs something like "Here's a picture and transcription of an authentic recipe.  Now here's my version, which substitutes baking powder for hartshorn, cinnamon for grains of paradise, and halves the sugar to suit modern tastes!"

Ivan Day is not that blogger.  He uses period techniques, ingredients, and tools to reproduce the historical recipes as accurately is possible.  One of his specialties is perfect reproductions of the elaborate set pieces of sugar, dough, and jelly that were part of upper-class European cuisine from the medieval period forward.
Enjoy!  I have ordered his Cooking in Europe:1650-1850 and am eagerly anticipating it.

Edit: DO take the time to watch the video of a flummery in motion.

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